to the point

Posted on 88 CommentsPosted in lace/shawls, Uncategorized

i think all the waiting was worth it!! kudos to david for taking some of the best modeling shots on this blog yet—he’s got a good eye for knits (among other fine things he has . . .)

i know—that one doesn’t really give you the detail you want, but i had to put it first.

i like this one a lot too—the shawl is long and sweepy enough to wrap around a couple of times

after i stopped being worried about getting it blocked so that the trim was even with the body, i started to worry that when i unpinned it, the points would all curl and twist when it hung from the body, but no.

they are flat, but not stiff, pointy, but not too.
the vintage wool is brilliant; i had my doubts for a while that it wasn’t really nice enough, too rough, and that it wouldn’t keep its shape in the finished piece, but i was wrong, wrong, wrong. it washed up a treat and is beautifully soft and responsive. in fact, i like it very much, especially that certain navy-ness that only vintage fibers have . . .
here’s a back view, in case you wondered.

most of these shots were taken in our bedroom—the light is beautiful and david made the room spectacular (it used to be navy and black striped wallpaper on walls and ceiling—so dark, you couldn’t even see the corners . . .). yeah, he’s not just a pretty-boy photographer.

though you wouldn’t know it . . .

and now for a couple of outdoor shots (sorry, i just couldn’t narrow it down!).

i’m really happy with it—pattern forthcoming.


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what a day. i knew as soon as i got up and moving that it might not be my best day yet.
i just couldn’t seem to get moving, for one thing.

i sat down to begin working on the charts for the starlight wrap and quickly became stymied by the new software. it’s kicking my butt, actually. in fact, i think i can even hear it snickering.
i’ll get familiar with it eventually, but i had a lot of trouble concentrating on it, so i went and unpinned the shawl.

nothing curled or shrank back horibbly—in fact, it looks lovely, so THAT was a good thing. i snapped a few pix and then went back to try at the software again. made some headway this time but it’s slow.

part of the problem is that i think the starlight lace pattern (the body stich), might be unchartable. the repeat part of each row shifts back and forth. it makes total sense when written out, but not when i try to chart it. hmm, much as i love pattern challenges, i guess i’m just not in the mood. i may forgo charting the body portion of this piece in lieu of written-only instructions, making charts for the star panels and edgings only.

beckie and jasmine came by in the early afternoon for some knitting and an all-too-brief visit; they had to go to a little party so they couldn’t stay long. jasmine is now 6 days overdue and we ask her every five minutes how she feels and if the baby is coming yet, but so far, he’s not budging.

after they left, i snuck back to bed thinking a nap with david would perk me up and, well . . . it did, of course. we finally got up in the late afternoon and had some lunch, after which i sweet-talked him into doing a photo shoot of me modeling the shawl. he agreed so i headed off to get all dolled-up.

(well finally, you say, where the heck is all this leading and where the hell are the pictures she promised???)

well, hold on, i’m getting to that. we did a great photo shoot and got nearly 300 shots. lots of pretty ones of me too, but not so many of the complete shawl (blush—he likes me!). still, there were a few in the camera that looked good so i headed down to the computer to download.

and . . . nuthin’. sigh.

the memory card in the camera won’t give up the goods.

i mean. i even had make-up on! and a dress. a nice dress. i looked glam.
(ok, g’head—say it—”i looked glam, for once“)

and now it’s way too dark to do it again today.

of course, this means not only do we not have those pictures, but we have NO pictures (at all) til i get a new memory card (i wonder if the card from the old camera will work?)
we are still trying to salvage a few pix and if we do, i’ll post them tomorrow.
and if we don’t, well . . . i’m gonna have to do some more sweet-talkin’.

hmmm . . . and maybe another nap, eh??

on the after-knitting

Posted on 23 CommentsPosted in projects, Uncategorized

good thing there are so many great jobs to do indoors today, because it is yet another drizzly
mess outside. of course, that means i can’t ride my bike to classes this afternoon, but i can go
to the library . . .

but then, these purple crocus bloomed yesterday, so that’s saying something for the weather. it has been, after all, consistently in the upper 50s and 60s all week. i can also see daffodil buds across the yard from the window in front of my desk.

that reminds me—we listened to a couple of good books in our travels last week and the week before. the first one was called My Year of Meats by ruth l. ozecki, and narrrated by anna fields.

in it, a woman is hired to help produce a TV show for japanese television which is aimed at presenting their audience with an idealized view of american housewives and their favorite beef recipes. jane quickly begins to rebel against the silly and unrealistic vision of the show’s sponsors, and then, even more importantly, begins to uncover some scandalous information about the product (beef) itself and how it is produced for the mass market.

all arguments for or against meat-eating aside, this book is a worthy read, as its exploration under the surface of many issues provides good food for thought (no pun intended). why not look a little deeper into the things we take for granted? does it really hurt to delve into the parts of everyday life that might not be so pretty underneath? or does exploring actually show us that problems are there, but that solutions are possible—even some that require little effort but a simple change of habit?

the second book we started and have not finished yet is called Broken for You, by stephanie kallos and again, narrated by anna fields.

this is story some rather isolated people who end up, one by one, entering each other’s force fields, so to speak, and affecting forever the way that they negotiate life as they have been leading it. we’re only about two-thirds through it, but it is engrossing enough that david made sure i would not finish it without him (that’s saying something, trust me . . .).

while i wait for the shawl to dry (it’s a little humid and the heat has been off, so drying times have slowed), i reviewed my socks-on-the-needles inventory. and i only had two pair going—not at all enough—these ragg socks i started a few weeks ago

i finished the first one last night while we watched the prologue for the paris-nice (cycling) tour last night. and started the second one too.

the other ones i have going are the austermann step socks that saved my sanity during the blizzard last weekend

almost done with this first one.
now, you might be thinking . . . “what happened to that hemp pair she dragged out and showed us the other day??” there is just one word for those.


ok, not a word, but really. the only reason any pair of socks sits unknit for nearly a year around here is that i hate the yarn and can truly not bear to have it in my hands. or at least, truly not bear to be knitting it on tiny needles. out they came. i might attempt a scarf with the yarn at some point.

or, i may just give it away. the thing is, i loved the idea of this yarn—wool and hemp. what could be more groovy? uhh—turns out, almost everything.

so i decided to go back and resuscitate another postponed sock project, this one put aside last fall when i just couldn’t decide what stitch to use.
i know—i get wa-a-ay too caught up in that—who even cares what stitch i should use??

anyway, this was a sock project i talked about here with great enthusiasm, and then proceeded to get all wound up to the point where i just couldn’t make a decision. so i put them aside.

after i ripped out the hemp sock, i got the tree-scum-colored yarn (no, i’m not kidding—just look at the stuff) out again, went back to the first stitch i envisioned for it, and cast on happily, with nary a second glance at any other stitches.

i think they’ll be just right, evoking tree bark and algae appropriately-well to get my message across.

some things just take time and relaxation to come to fruition i guess. and no snide remarks from YOU about messages in tree scum, please . . .

so, now i’m feeling more well-rounded with three pair of socks on the needles.

but i need to remedy the fact that i have no shawl on the needles at present (though i DO have a pattern to produce). can you believe it? i already feel at a loss without a lace shawl to knit.

but never fear—i have several projects to start, the first one up in Briar Rose Fibers yarn; a shawl in two weights that will be pretty in two very different fiber offerings from this wonderful dyer. i also have two other shawl projects queued-up to follow, so it’s gonna be a busy couple of months for me, with exciting things in the works.

nap of the century

Posted on 42 CommentsPosted in lace/shawls, Uncategorized

oh man! i meant to get this post written SO much earlier today—then i decided to wait til i had pictures of something special all set. once that was done, i thought “i’ll just lie down for a quick nap before i write to clear my head”. that was at 6pm.

i didn’t know it would turn into Nap of the Century—i just woke up a half hour ago (it’s nearly midnight).

oh well. so lemme ask you—what goes really good with bubbly??



yup, it’s done—can you believe it? i almost can’t—only because i knit it myself do i understand that this piece is finally finished.

i even blocked it.

i know you love blocking shots, so that’s why i waited to write the post.

it took quite a bit of time to block—not only did i have to get the edges all straight, but i had to fiddle with all the inner lines to get them to lie straight too (they got a little distorted in the wash).

it was totally worth spending all that time fidddling.
but some day—SOME day—i will learn; some day i will actually order some blocking wires.

here’s a detail shot (though it’s hard to get a close-up and still have all the elements showing . . .).
i think i used every single one of the 500 or so yellow-headed pins i have.

i made the points on one end be the opposite of the points on the other end. not sure how this will pan out; i’ll make my final judgement after looking at the modeling shots (forthcoming, once it’s unpinned) but it could also be worked so that they all face the same way. i had this idea that they should oppose each other, but it could backfire and just look weird!

i keep walking back into the living room to look at it; it blocked out so well. i was a little nervous that the edging and the body would not block out nicely together—i dunno why. i should know better. but there you have it. we all get nervous that the final stages of our creations will yield disaster. of course, it doesn’t help that lace isn’t lace until the absolute, very last step.

according to my sophisticated system of filing and note-taking

i used 8 ounces of vintage beehive scotch wool fingering yarn—about 1400 yards. this yielded a stole that is 24 inches wide and 96 inches long. instructions for a more petite length will be included in the pattern, which i am hoping to have done soon.

and so now, off to the drawing board to see about that.